Gomez says no politics behind probe of violator of environmental laws in Leyte
TACLOBAN CITY — Leyte Rep. Richard Gomez has denied accusations that the probe on a poultry farm owned by a municipal mayor was politically motivated.
Gomez, in a recent interview, said the action he has taken against the DBSN Farm owned by Palompon Mayor Ramon Oñate has legal basis.
“Hindi ito pamumulitika. (It’s not politicking). I have all the legal basis here. It is telling the people that he is an abusive mayor and he uses his power for his personal gains,” the actor-turned-politician said.
Gomez has filed a resolution calling for the investigation against Oñate and his DBSN Farm for environmental violations particularly on polluting a watershed in Palompon of dead chicken and chicken dung.
“He should face the allegations against him. We have all the evidence which was provided to me by various government agencies. Why is he polluting a protected area, a watershed,” he said.
Oñate, for his part, said that the action of Gomez was politically motivated. During the congressional elections in 2022, Oñate supported the opponent of Gomez, former elections commissioner Gregorio Larrazabal.
In a position paper, Oñate dismissed the claims of Gomez.
“The issue that DBSN Farms Agriventures Dressing Plant has been dumping chicken waste in Barangay San Joaquin, Palompon, Leyte thereby causing health problems and contaminating its water source is irrelevant because the breeder farm has nothing to do with any of such alleged complaints,” he said.
“As a breeder farm, we only dispose of our chicken waste, mainly chicken manure at the end of the breeding cycle and that is after 42 weeks from the beginning of its operation. We also have a regulated and designated soil conditioner containment area (compost pit) for chicken manure with an Environmental Compliance Certificate (ECC) from the Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) Region VIII, Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR),” he added.
Oñate said that the rural health of Palompon has not recorded or reported any health problems relative to the operations of their poultry farm.